Air layer those fugly roots right off to expose your inner beautiful ficus bonsai!

Mayank

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All right, been meaning to initiate this thread for quite some time now but clearly the coronavirus has made it happen. Boredom is working its wonders! I can post more information but I think most people already know the basics. If not (this thread is geared towards noobs) then the pics should be self-explanatory. A well-meaning friend gave us this ginseng-root ficus that kinda just bothered me for a year or two and I felt compelled to do something. I'll post the pics in succession and then show current pics.
 

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Mayank

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Then I whacked off the top and tossed the bottom and planted it in fairly organic soil for a year. Then I transferred to more inorganic soil and this is what it looks like after four years or so. The funky looking growth is from the gro lights I think
 

Anthony

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You do realise, it is / was a grafted plant ?

Try a Ficus b., or Willow ficus, use the aerial roots in
the design.
Good Day
Anthony
 

DonovanC

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You do realise, it is / was a grafted plant ?

Try a Ficus b., or Willow ficus, use the aerial roots in
the design.
Good Day
Anthony
I don’t think this one was grafted. These types usually are, but I don’t see any signs of it. I have that was similar to this one when I got it and it was not grafted.
 

DonovanC

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Then I whacked off the top and tossed the bottom and planted it in fairly organic soil for a year. Then I transferred to more inorganic soil and this is what it looks like after four years or so. The funky looking growth is from the gro lights I think
I’m eager to see what it looks like! Did you forget to add the most recent pictures?
 

DonovanC

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Sorry I totally forgot!!! Here they are. But not sure about the front if either. I may turn it too. Also needs to be worked on. Just let it chill over the winter.
Nice! It’s looks awesome 👍
I have one that had similar roots when I got it. I didn’t air layer it, I just chopped off the roots and grow it as a large cutting - it worked out well. It’s been in training for just a few days shy of a year. I do regret not chopping enough off - I wish that I would have chopped it higher up on the trunk (closer to the first division). I’ve thought about air layering it similar to what you’ve done, but I’m learning to appreciate it for how it is, so I don’t think I’ll be doing that. Ive decided to cover the trunk with areal roots in the future. I’ve been working on developing areal roots on some of my other microcarpas and I think I’ve got it down.
In the first image you can’t see how terrible it really was - out of the pot it looked like a bundle of carrots.8FA387B7-61B2-4CB4-B1EB-FA343CFA08D8.jpegB4400908-FD29-456F-892D-A4E7C53C466C.jpegB1940CC7-55DE-4C91-9345-3A31F74DE650.jpeg
 

DonovanC

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Sorry I totally forgot!!! Here they are. But not sure about the front if either. I may turn it too. Also needs to be worked on. Just let it chill over the winter.
Also, I like the slant to the left as the front.
 

Grovic

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Sorry I totally forgot!!! Here they are. But not sure about the front if either. I may turn it too. Also needs to be worked on. Just let it chill over the winter.
I like the new tree, did you do something out of the old roots?
 

Grovic

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Nice! It’s looks awesome 👍
I have one that had similar roots when I got it. I didn’t air layer it, I just chopped off the roots and grow it as a large cutting - it worked out well. It’s been in training for just a few days shy of a year. I do regret not chopping enough off - I wish that I would have chopped it higher up on the trunk (closer to the first division). I’ve thought about air layering it similar to what you’ve done, but I’m learning to appreciate it for how it is, so I don’t think I’ll be doing that. Ive decided to cover the trunk with areal roots in the future. I’ve been working on developing areal roots on some of my other microcarpas and I think I’ve got it down.
In the first image you can’t see how terrible it really was - out of the pot it looked like a bundle of carrots.View attachment 290490View attachment 290491View attachment 290492
Seems like those roots will fuse into a nice tapering single trunk in the future, I like it.
 

Mayank

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You do realise, it is / was a grafted plant ?

Try a Ficus b., or Willow ficus, use the aerial roots in
the design.
Good Day
Anthony
I didn't understand what's your point about it being grafted?
 

Mayank

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You do realize since you weren't saving the base you could have just sawed it off where you did the layer and planted it and it would have rooted easily without the need for any of the layering process.
I really wanted to try air layering and I actually honestly never thought the top itself would really ever amount to anything but I'm kinda starting to like it some now. Also, I wasn't sure if the top alone would root or not to be honest but that didn't occur to me because again I really didn't like the top much either at the time but I really wanted something to experiment with. After that I tried it with my willow leaf ficus.
 

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